I’ve been walking at work during my lunch; a mile or two…last Wednesday three. I’ve found that the further I go the better my feet feel. After two miles of my Wednesday walk my feet felt almost normal. I wondered how they’d feel if I ran some of it. I haven’t run much at all in about four years, so this morning as I headed out at 7 a.m. for a 3 mile run/walk…I was hoping I’d feel good enough at the 1.5 mile mark to commit to doing 4 miles. I did. So here’s my report.
Mile 1: I started walking through my subdivision out to the main road .3 miles away. A couple houses from my driveway I figured I might as well run a little to see how it went. It went OK. My feet hurt, no surprise, but everything else seemed to be about right. Out on the main dirt road I began to trot, feeling things out. It’s mostly downhill, that first mile, and I didn’t want to waste it. I can’t find my watch, so I had no idea about time, but it didn’t matter. A deer fly circled my head. I remember those. Darn. I just about knocked myself out swatting him off my forehead. I tried running some to get away and was reminded that you can’t outrun a deer fly. As I got down to the wetlands the red winged blackbirds began dive bombing me. Oh yea. I remembered that too and began to grin. Because I was out there again.
Mile 2: This one is mostly uphill and sunny. It’s also the mile I had to decide whether to continue on or turn around at the ½ mile mark. It turned out to be a no brainer. Sure the rest of the mile was uninteresting as well as sunny and uphill and it was getting hot. But still…a chance to do 4 miles was too good to turn around. So I didn’t. I saw chipmunks running across the road, and I noticed bright pink wild roses in the grass filled ditch. And then….I saw a black raspberry bush glowing in a patch of sunlight! And there was one black, ripe raspberry waiting for me. Good thing I wasn’t on the clock so I could go off course and pick that berry and savor it on the last few yards of mile two. Yum. Pure summer.
Mile 3: I turned around and knew I’d be enjoying my favorite mile of this route. I ran the first ½ mile without stopping. Yea I know it’s downhill and this mile is actually slightly short but I’ll take it. This was the first time I’ve felt remotely like a runner in years. Sure I felt some old twinges in the right knee (welcome back old friend) and some new twinges in the groin (what’s up with that?!) but it sure felt good. The second half of the mile is a big curve. I ran the white line while carefully listening for oncoming cars, ready to jump down into the ditch if one came along. I had to do that twice but I didn’t care. I was out there.
Mile 4: The first 2/10 of the mile is pretty much the only downhill of that last mile home. I generally don’t like to waste it, but this time I didn’t care. It’s the downhill part of the freeway overpass and since I had just run up the other side I was no longer feeling so joyous and I wasn’t giving a fig about wasting anything. So I started out walking. Then I realized it was shady and downhill. What the heck, I started running again and turned onto my dirt road at the bottom with a smile, slowing to a walk.
Then I began arguing with myself. Here’s the conversation in my head. Bet you’ve all been there:
You should run all the shady areas and walk in the sun.
Let’s just wait till we get around this next curve so we can see how much shade there is.
Oh. Quite a bit of shade. Would mean lots of running.
So get on with it.
Why don’t we just wait until we get to the next mailbox and then we’ll run.
Why don’t we just run to the next mailbox?
But that’s, like, only 15 feet!
Now that you’re running why not run to that next one up there?
But that’s way up there! And I have to run through sun! Whine!
And your problem with that is?
Sigh. Gheesh. OK.
Besides the fly is back, better get a move on.
Ok! OK! I’m moving!
And that’s the way I made it home…arguing with myself all the way. It worked.
So now all of you have gone with me on my 4 mile run/walk. Aren’t you glad you got it in early? Before the sun was all the way up? And now you don’t have it hanging over your head all day.
As Katie says….you can thank me later.